Tuesday, October 16, 2007

One Country, Two Systems - Part ll

"Important for investors and economic growth is the rule of law, implemented through an independent judiciary, an honest and efficient police force, and effective law enforcement agencies."
- MM Lee Kuan Yew, speech at the IBA Conference, 14 Oct 2007

One law for them..

PAP Members of Parliament from the post-65 generation performing a hip hop dance at the Chingay Parade on Orchard Road in February this year. The main objective is to "to laugh at yourself, to have a sense of humour about everything.. Trying to connect with the youth," explains MP Chris de Souza. Watch video of their rehearsal here.

Another for the rest of us.

Citing how "cause-related" events "have a higher potential to stir emotions and controversy", Singapore police has rejected an application for a permit to hold a "Peace For Burma Concert" at the Timbre Bar. Last month, an application by the Substation Arts Centre to hold an outdoor flea market to be manned by 19 civil society groups was also rejected by the police.

One law for him..

CASE executive director Seah Seng Choon campaigning for consumers rights in a march around the Singapore River to commemorate World Consumers Rights Day.

Another for him.

John Tan of the opposition Singapore Democratic Party is being arrested on Orchard Road opposite the Istana. He and three other members of the party were holding placards calling on the government to reveal their business links with the Burmese junta. More pics here.

One law for him...

First aired on CNA in 2002, this video is now being packaged and marketed by local company Innoform Media and is currently on sale in all major bookstores in Singapore. According to this website, the "89-minute two-part documentary takes a look at how Lee brought Singapore to independence, and interestingly gives viewers a glimpse into his personal life."

Somehow, the DVD managed to escape the clauses defined in Section 33 of the Films Act, which essentially prohibits any film that is "directed towards any political end in Singapore". That includes any film which "contains wholly or partly either partisan or biased references to or comments on any political matter", including references to the Government, a Member of Parliament, and "any body whose objects relate wholly or mainly to politics in Singapore, or any branch of such party or body."

Click here for the rest of what constitutes a "film directed towards any political end".

Another for the rest of us.

Singapore Rebel, a 26 minute documentary about opposition activist Dr Chee Soon Juan, is banned by the Singapore Government and its filmmaker was subjected to 15 months of police investigation for alleged violation of the above Films Act. Anyone who is in possession of the video is liable upon conviction to a fine not exceeding $100,000 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 2 years.

See also Filmmakers on JBJ threatened

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Videos of bloody crackdown in Burma

Inside Myanmar : The Crackdown

Part ll of this AlJazeera report here.

More videos of crackdown here, here, here, here and here.

"In Rangoon, people say they are more frightened now than when soldiers were shooting on the streets."

The scale of the crackdown remains undocumented. The regime has banned journalists from entering Burma and has blocked internet access and phone lines.

Mark Farmaner of the Burma Campaign UK says the number of dead is possibly in the hundreds. "The regime covers up its atrocities. We will never know the true numbers," he said.

At the weekend the government said it has released more than half of the 2,171 people arrested, but exile groups estimate the number of detentions between 6,000 and 10,000.

In Rangoon, people say they are more frightened now than when soldiers were shooting on the streets.

"When there were demonstrations and soldiers on the streets, the world was watching," said a professional woman who watched the marchers from her office.

"But now the soldiers only come at night. They take anyone they can identify from their videos. People who clapped, who offered water to the monks, who knelt and prayed as they passed. People who happened to turn and watch as they passed by and their faces were caught on film. It is now we are most fearful. It is now we need the world to help us."
The full article
Only now, the full horror of Burmese junta's repression of monks emerges

And Singapore is not the only Southeast Asian country to practise the One Country Two Systems brand of governance.
Burma government holds rally, junta arrests prominent activists

Singapore and Burma: Such Good Friends
By Eric Ellis/Asian Sentinel

Thursday, October 04, 2007

One Country, Two Systems

Marching for consumer rights ...

A public assembly near Singapore's Parliament House to commemorate World Consumer Rights Day. "Thousands of participants" took part in the "nation-wide" march, including a ministerial guest-of-honour. Picture taken on 18th March, 2007 and can be seen here.

but not for human rights.

A member of the opposition Singapore Democratic Party is surrounded by police as she and five others attempted to stage a pro-democracy march towards Parliament House during the IMF-World Bank Meetings held in Singapore. The activists are currently under police investigation. Photo was taken at Hong Lim Park on 16th September, 2006.

White expats can protest ...

Expatriate women gathered on Waterloo Street in Singapore as part of a global action in to support the brave in Myanmar. No report of police videotaping in the vicinity. Not known if police are investigating. Picture taken on Friday, 28th Septermber, 2007 by AP and can be found here and here and here.

while Asians get harassed.

Police [left] are seen videotaping Burmese nationals gathered around the petition table outside the Burmese Embassy in Singapore. Police is investigating. Picture taken on Sunday, 30th September, 2007 by TOC and can be found here.

Police rejects permit for outdoor protest by S’pore student

While prostitutes openly solicits on Orchard Road, Singapore Police would rather harass Burmese petitioners.


Soldiers hunting down dissidents in Burma

"We have photographs. We are going to make arrests!"

Junta dragging residents from beds in terror patrols at night

Meanwhile, it's business as usual for Singapore Inc.

Tay Za(L), Chairman of Air Bagan and a close business associate of General Than Shwe, and Lim Kim Choon, Director-General and Chief Executive Officer of Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore, toast at the launch of Air Bagan’s maiden flight to Singapore after its arrival at Changi International Airport on September 7. Photo and report by AFP.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Guard dogs of St. Martin's Drive

For the past two days, residents in the upmarket apartments on St. Martin's Drive, located off Tanglin Road, have been enjoying free security reinforcements by courtesy of the Singapore Police Force. About a dozen plainclothes officers have been loitering at the road's entrance since Sunday in an attempt to intimidate members of the public from participating in a petition signing exercise outside the Burmese Embassy.

This video says it all.

The police worked on rotating shifts. I arrived at about 11pm on Sunday night and saw a different team from that shown in the above video. Asians arriving on foot or in vehicles had their identity cards checked and subsequently warned that they may be investigated for public assembly should they proceed to the embassy. Curiously, as officers continue to harass the Asians, most of them Burmese nationals, two cars carrying Caucasians whizzed by me. As one officer trained his video camera lens on me, I thought I repay the courtesy, and then some. Below were some members of the team from the Central Police Station stationed on St. Martin's Drive around between 11pm until 1am.

Ong Poh Tuck

Mohd Shafiee

Leng Han Ping

Chee Boon Heng

Neo Wei Kiat

Unidentified officer

Video cameraman handing over duties

Unidentified senior officer who took over shift

TOC Report: Over 400 visit Burmese embassy to sign petition

When a permit is required for compassion - disgusting

Pictures of vigil

More pictures

Thousands dead in massacre of the monks dumped in the jungle

Thousands of protesters are dead and the bodies of hundreds of executed monks have been dumped in the jungle, a former intelligence officer for Burma's ruling junta has revealed.

The most senior official to defect so far, Hla Win, said: "Many more people have been killed in recent days than you've heard about. The bodies can be counted in several thousand."

Read the rest